Plant shade trees
Well-placed shade trees can reduce your cooling needs by up to 30% by blocking heat from the sun. In fact, shaded walls can be 5-15°C cooler at peak temperatures. If you choose trees that lose their leaves in the autumn months, the sun can still reach your home in the winter to help keep you warm.
If you are comfortable with gardening, you may be able to plant shade trees on your own. Otherwise, consult a professional gardener, landscaping service, or local nursery.
- Choose the right tree(s). Deciduous trees — those that lose their leaves in the fall — work best for most climates because they block sunlight in the warmer months and let it reach your home in the cooler months. Make certain the full-grown height of the tree is appropriate for your home and yard. Also, a local nursery can help you choose tree species that are native to our area.
- Choose the right placement. For the best results, plant trees to the west and southwest of your home. Planting to the east can also help, but less so, making this a lower priority. Think about coverage not only for windows, but for the walls and roof in general. Click here for information on which trees to plant and where.
- Locate all underground utilities before you begin. Notify utilities at least two days in advance of digging.
- Plant and care for the tree(s). Consult your local nursery for more information based on the tree(s) you select.
- Increase home value: Trees can increase the value of your home.
- Enhance visual appeal: Additional trees can beautify your home in terms of its visual appeal from the outside and inside.
- Improve outdoor comfort: Shade from trees can make your yard more comfortable for kids playing or social gatherings.
- Protect the environment: Increasing tree cover in our area creates broader environmental benefits. For example, trees help prevent soil erosion, provide shelter for wildlife, and absorb greenhouse gases from the atmosphere.